From following in the footsteps of a favorite novel series or finding new and rare wines to praise, river cruising is not just about passing iconic scenery while sailing the great rivers of Europe.

Avalon Waterways is offering, among a long menu of choices, a chance to sail with Diana Gabaldon, author of the very popular Outlander novels on an Author Cruise on the Rhine River, giving fans the chance to get insider Outlander insight, during a week in June.

"Diana Gabaldon has added to the storytelling tapestry of our lives while also inspiring travel with her literature," said Pam Hoffee, managing director of Avalon Waterways. "In her OUTLANDER series of novels and novellas – now an award-winning series on STARZ – she has brought to life the backdrops of Scotland, North America, France, Germany as well as dozens of destinations across the globe. On the June 9, 2020 departure of Avalon's Romantic Rhine Author Cruise with Diana Gabaldon from Basel to Amsterdam, this inspiring storyteller will share an inspired cruise – and daily excursions – with an intimate group of her fans."

The week-long bleisure opportunity – set onboard the Avalon Expression – delivers cruisers to the heart of Europe to explore all the towns and cities along the Rhine River have to offer while enjoying panoramic views and spectacular, castle-lined backdrops day and night.
Also on the menu for upcoming river cruises:

Avalon Waterways invites photography enthusiasts and aspiring shutterbugs onboard the Seine River to learn from a seasoned photographer, cruise through postcard-perfect backdrops and enjoy the beauty and scenes of France, from Paris, the "City of Light," to Le Havre, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Stops in-between include the WWII Landing Beaches in Normandy, Monet's Giverny, Rouen's astronomical clock, Van Gogh's Auvers-sur-Oise and Napoléon's Chateau de Malmaison.

"Avalon's 'special Interest' itineraries complement stories with stout, history with harmony and impressions with impressionism," said Hoffee.  "In addition to announcing new author and photography cruises in 2020, we are also unveiling new culinary-themed vacations and favorites featuring wine, beer, history, heritage and of course, Christmas markets. Regardless of the theme, our passion-filled vacations have the great distinction of uniting our guests with their pastimes and other like-minded travelers."

Palate-Pleasing Adventures: New Culinary Cruises.

Enter a food-lover's paradise in the land of haute cuisine. These river cruises invite travelers to enjoy delectable flavors, decadent aromas and delightful textures sure to send taste buds into overdrive.
*  A Culinary Experience in Burgundy & Provence (March 31 departure)
*  A Culinary Experience on Rhine & Rhone Revealed (March 24 departure)

The World in Red & White: Wine Cruises.

Whether travelers are weekend-sippers or wannabe sommeliers, it's time to take a cruise where the river and Rieslings flow. On these 2020 wine cruises, vino lovers of the world unite with the world's most renowned winemakers and wine masters on the rolling vineyards of Europe.
* Danube Dreams for Wine Lovers (April 30 and October 29 departures)
* Burgundy & Provence for Wine Lovers (October 27 departure)
* Grand France for Wine Lovers (October 6 and October 20 departures)
* Rhine & Rhône Revealed for Wine Lovers (October 6 and October 20 departures)

Adventure is Brewing: Beer Cruises.
Pairing fascinating history with a beverage that goes just as far back in time, an Avalon Beer Cruise promises incredible scenery and visits to the greatest beer scenes in Europe.
* Tulip Time Cruise for Beer Enthusiasts (April 4 departure)
* Enchanted Europe for Beer Enthusiasts (July 16 departure)
* Magnificent Europe for Beer Enthusiasts (October 27 departure)

Wonder in Bloom: Garden & Nature Cruises.
Spring in Holland and Belgium is no time to tiptoe through the tulips. It's time to sail, stroll and skip through their glorious splendor.
* Tulip Time Cruise for Garden & Nature Lovers (April 11 and 18 departures)

Remembrance on the River: World War I and II Cruises.
All river cruises venture back in time. These World War I and II history cruises make a special trip to honor and commemorate the significant sites of the fearless and fallen that fought for freedom.
* Tulip Time in Holland & Belgium WW1 Remembrance & History Cruise (April 19 departure)
* Paris to Normandy WWII Remembrance & History Cruise (June 2 departure)

Once Upon a Castle: Habsburg Cruises.
In the fairytale settings of Germany, Austria and Hungary, Avalon Waterways is rolling out the red carpet for travelers sailing along the Danube. From the palaces of Budapest and Vienna to the castles and estates of the surrounding countryside, it's time to sip Champagne in the same reception rooms, walk the same art-filled corridors of Europe's royal past.
* Danube Dreams with Habsburg & Royalty (July 11 departure)
* From the Danube Delta to Prague with Habsburg & Royalty (July 2 departure)

Under the Star: Jewish Heritage Cruises.
History's most moving chapters come to life sailing down the Danube, Rhine and Rhône Rivers on an Avalon Jewish Heritage cruise. Deep in the Jewish quarters of Europe's most historic cities, explore museums and monuments, cemeteries and synagogues and get the touching stories behind them all.
* Romantic Rhine with Jewish Heritage (July 21 departure)
* Rhine & Rhône Revealed with Jewish Heritage (July 14 departure)
* The Legendary Danube with Jewish Heritage (August 11 departure)

Passion for the Passion Play.
Finally, for travelers who have been waiting years (and years) to experience Oberammergau's Passion Play – a theatrical tradition that has taken place every 10 years since 1634 – Avalon Waterways is delivering with an unforgettable cruise experience and preferred seating at the Passion Play.
* Danube Dreams with Oberammergau 2020 (multiple departures throughout 2020)

The Suite Life Sales Event: Book a 2020 Europe cruise early and receive $299 air and SAVE $1,000 per couple on select sailings.
More information: www.avalonwaterways.com